Fitz Roy

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Monte Fitz Roy
Fitz Roy Chalten Argentina Todor Bozhinov 2013.jpg
Monte Fitz Roy in 2013
Highest point
Elevation3,405 m (11,171 ft) [1]
Prominence1,951 m (6,401 ft) [1]
Coordinates49°16′16.6″S 73°02′35.6″W / 49.271278°S 73.043222°W / -49.271278; -73.043222Coordinates: 49°16′16.6″S 73°02′35.6″W / 49.271278°S 73.043222°W / -49.271278; -73.043222
Monte Fitz Roy is located in Southern Patagonia
Monte Fitz Roy
Monte Fitz Roy
Location in the Southern Patagonia, on the border between Argentina and Chile[2][3][4][5]
LocationPatagonia, ArgentinaChile border[2][3][4][5]
Parent rangeAndes
Mountain typeGranite
First ascent1952 by Lionel Terray & Guido Magnone
Easiest routeFranco Argentina (650m., 6a+, 6c/A1)

Monte Fitz Roy (also known as Cerro Chaltén, Cerro Fitz Roy, or simply Mount Fitz Roy) is a mountain in Patagonia, on the border between Argentina and Chile.[2][3][6][4][5] It is located in the Southern Patagonian Ice Field, near El Chaltén village and Viedma Lake. It was first climbed in 1952 by French alpinists Lionel Terray and Guido Magnone.

European discovery[edit]

The first Europeans recorded as seeing Mount Fitz Roy were the Spanish explorer Antonio de Viedma and his companions, who reached the shores of Viedma Lake in 1783. Argentine explorer Francisco Moreno saw the mountain on 2 March 1877; he named it Fitz Roy in honour of Robert FitzRoy who, as captain of HMS Beagle, had travelled up the Santa Cruz River in 1834 and charted large parts of the Patagonian coast.[7]

Cerro is a Spanish word meaning ridge, while Chaltén comes from a Tehuelche (Aonikenk) word meaning "smoking mountain", because a cloud usually forms around the mountain's peak. Fitz Roy is one of a number of peaks the Tehuelche called Chaltén.[7]


Argentina and Chile have agreed that their international border detours eastwards to pass over the main summit,[2] but a large part of the border to the south of the summit, as far as Cerro Murallón, remains undefined.[8] The mountain is the symbol of the Argentine Santa Cruz Province, which includes its representation on its coat of arms.[citation needed]

Notable ascents[edit]

  • 1952, Lionel Terray and Guido Magnone via Southeast Ridge (Franco-Argentine Ridge) (first ascent - 2 February 1952)[9]
  • 1965, Carlos Comesaña and José Luis Fonrouge (from Argentina) via Supercanaleta (1,600m, TD+ 5.10 90deg) in 2-1/2 days (second ascent)[10]
  • 1968, Southwest Ridge aka The Californian Route (third ascent). Ascent by the "Fun Hogs": Yvon Chouinard (who went on to found outdoor clothing and equipment company Patagonia and climbing equipment company Black Diamond Equipment), Dick Dorworth, Chris Jones, Lito Tejada-Flores (filmmaker, whose 16mm Bolex camera footage of the ascent was used for the film of the expedition entitled Mountain of Storms) and Douglas Tompkins (who, in 1964, had co-founded outdoor equipment and clothing company The North Face).[11][12]
  • 1972, Southeast Ridge (fourth ascent). Ian Wade (U.S.), Dave Nicol (UK), Mo Anthoine (UK), Guy Lee (UK), Larry Derby (U.S.) & Eddie Birch (UK).
  • 1980, following the Col Americano route, Gino Casassa (Chile, monitor of the Andinism Federation of Chile) and Walter Bertsch (Austria) arrived at the peak together. Alejandro Izquierdo (Chilean) climbed to 2,800 m.[13]
  • 1984, Franco Argentina Route by Marcos Couch, Eduardo Brenner, Alberto Bendinger, and Pedro Friedrich.
  • 1986, First winter ascent, in July, by Argentines Eduardo Brenner, Sebastián De La Cruz and Gabriel Ruiz, over three days via Supercanaleta.
  • 2002, Dean Potter, first free solo, via Supercanaleta[10][14]
  • 2009, Colin Haley, solo via Supercanaleta[10]
  • 2009, Matthew McCarron, solo via The Californian Route [10]
  • 2014, Between 12 and 16 February, Tommy Caldwell and Alex Honnold completed the first ascent of the much discussed "Fitz Traverse", climbing across the iconic ridge line of Fitz Roy and its satellite peaks.[15] The route is 5 kilometers long and has approximately 4,000 meters of vertical elevation, with routes ranging in difficulty up to 5.11d.[16]
  • 2019, Jim Reynolds, free solo.[14]
  • 2021, Sean Villanueva O’Driscoll completed the second ascent and first solo ascent of the "Fitz Traverse", completing the route in reverse.[17][18]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Argentina and Chile, Southern - Patagonia Ultra Prominences". Retrieved 5 October 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d "Border agreement between Chile and Argentina to determine the border from Mount Fitz Roy to Daudet". 1998. Archived from the original on 31 May 2016. Retrieved 7 August 2006.
  3. ^ a b c "Mount Fitz Roy -". Archived from the original on 24 August 2018. Retrieved 26 June 2016.
  4. ^ a b c La montaña que parece echar humo, en la Patagonia
  5. ^ a b c [1]
  6. ^ MONTE FITZ ROY Andes Hand Book
  7. ^ a b Moreno, FP (2006) [1879]. Viaje a la Patagonia Austral (in Spanish). La Nacion (Elefante Blanco). p. 2. ISBN 987-96054-7-0. Como este volcán activo no ha sido mencionado por los navegantes ni viajeros, y como el nombre de Chaltén que le dan los indios lo aplican también a otras montañas, me permito llamarle volcán Fitz Roy - English: Since this active volcano has not been mentioned by navigators or travellers, and since the name Chalten that the Indians call it is also applied to other mountains, I allow myself to name it Fitz Roy volcano
  8. ^ "Map showing border between Chile and Argentina (partly undefined)". Retrieved 26 June 2016.
  9. ^ Silleck, H (3 February 2007). "Patagonia: Fitzroy". Retrieved 2 February 2009.
  10. ^ a b c d MacDonald, D (15 January 2009). "Haley Solos Fitz Roy's Supercanaleta". Climbing Hot Flashes. Climbing Magazine. Retrieved 15 August 2016.
  11. ^ Thompkins, D; Carter, HA (1969). "Fitz Roy, 1968". American Alpine Journal. 16 (43): 263–9.
  12. ^ Patagonia. "Mountain of Storms". Patagonia. Retrieved 7 April 2020.
  13. ^ "First chilean climb of Mount Fitz Roy - Perros". Archived from the original on 10 June 2016. Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  14. ^ a b Levy, Michael (9 April 2019). "Jim Reynolds' Fitz Roy Free Solo: Putting it in Perspective with the Pros". Rock and Ice. Retrieved 24 January 2021.
  15. ^ MacDonald, D (18 February 2014). "Caldwell, Honnold Complete Fitz Traverse". Climbing News. Climbing Magazine. Retrieved 15 August 2016.
  16. ^ Garibotti, R. (18 February 2014). Caldwell, Honnold Finish 5k Fitz Roy Traverse. Retrieved 5 September 2018, from
  17. ^ Slavsky, Bennett. "Sean Villanueva O'Driscoll Completes The Fitz Traverse Solo". Climbing Magazine. Retrieved 13 February 2021.
  18. ^ "Patagonia Climbing on Instagram: "Congrats to @seanvillanuevaodriscoll, who just completed the Reverse Fitz Traverse... alone, with only a rope, a penny whistle and some…"". Instagram. Retrieved 13 February 2021.

Further reading[edit]

  • Kearney A, 1993. Mountaineering in Patagonia. Seattle, Washington: Cloudcap.
  • Terray L, Conquistadors of the Useless, p. 307-8, Victor Gollancz Ltd., 1963. ISBN 0-89886-778-9

External links[edit]